SDB Vital Worship at South Atlantic Association

Written by Carl Greene

November 23, 2022

Something to be thankful for. A vibrant, enthusiastic South Atlantic Association (SAA) gathering took place November 11 – 13, 2022 in Royal Palm Beach, Florida with the theme “A Ready People for a Broken World.” Pastor Garfield Miller, SAA President along with the SAA leadership team hosted a tremendous Association event while also welcoming representatives from 8 SDB Churches from outside the South Atlantic Association. There is more to this story.

Click here if you would like to watch the recorded SAA worship service: SAA Worship Service 2022

SDB Vital Worship

The SDB General Conference has been awarded a generous grant to launch the SDB Vital Worship initiative. Representatives from SDB Churches gather in specific worship settings to intentionally worship together, build relationships, assess the unity through diversity among SDBs, and develop a holistic understanding of SDB worship liturgy and Vital Worship. This program is made possible through a Vital Worship Grant from the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship, Grand Rapids, Michigan, with funds provided by Lilly Endowment Inc.

The SDB Vital Worship group had the privilege of launching their in-person worship experience by taking in the fullness of the South Atlantic Association gathering. SDB Vital Worship participants at SAA included: Andres Jara and Tabba Bernau (Anchor of Hope SDB Church, Dodge Center MN); Jennifer Bonesteel, Rebecca Galusha, and Andrew Oathout (Berlin SDB, Berlin NY); Miriam Berg (Frontier Church – Carbon Valley, Dacono CO); Kelly Parker (Next Step Church, Thorton CO); Keith Ashley and Conlief Lyons (Toronto SDB, Toronto CA); Neil Lubke and David St. Clair (Milton SDB, Milton WI); Thelma Maxwell and Luan Comrie-Shaw (Fort Lauderdale SDB, Fort Lauderdale FL); Edson and Seanette Barrett (Philadelphia SDB, Philadelphia PA). Participants also included the amazing hospitality coordinators, Danny and Danita Lee. (The featured picture captures most of this group).

The SDB Vital Worship group participated with SAA Friday evening and Sabbath day, and then had their own parallel program on Sunday morning to conduct their work as part of the grant initiative. More details about that ongoing work will be coming in future communications! The Sunday morning discussion was guided by the framework developed by Carl Greene, the grant administrator, and facilitated by Pastor David Stall.


The SDB General Council and SDB Coordinated Leadership Team are grateful for the opportunity to engage in the Vital Worship Program. The SDB Vital Worship group is engaged in a dynamic initiative that impacts Seventh Day Baptists and the broader Christian community. As stated by John Witvliet, director of the CICW, “We are eager to learn . . . from resourceful teams of local leaders responding to pressing needs and opportunities in their context. We look forward to sharing learning from these creative efforts over the next several months and years.”

Want to see more of SAA? Click here if you would like to watch the recorded SAA evening program: SAA Evening Program 2022. The day included updates from the SDB General Conference, the SDB Memorial Fund, the SDB Missionary Society, and more!

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